School of the Laity

(2017) School of the Laity Brochure

Upcoming Class Dates

March 10-11, 2018, June 8-10, 2018, October 13-14, 2018

Courses Offered March 10-11, 2018

First Year Students: New Testament – SOL_Registration Form_NT
Rev. Bob Brearley, Co-Pastor, St.Simons

Second Year Students: Practical Ministry One – Registration Form_PM1
Rev. Jamil el-Shair, Pastor, Midway First


2018 Continuing Education Schedule of Classes
March 10-11, 2018
Christian Preaching,

Rev. Will Shelburne, Associate Pastor, First Savannah

June 8-10, 2018
Worship & Sacraments
Revs. Mary & Eric Beene

October 13-14, 2018
Pastoral Care
Rev. Rachel Greiner
Sermon on the Mount
Registration Form_Sermon on the Mount
Rev. Chris Noyes

History of the
School of the Laity program

2017 School of the Laity graduates, from left: Ken Bailey, Emily Crawford Sanders, Barbara Conner, Daniel Walters

From left, Class of 2016, Graduates Katie Hogan, Tom Marsicano, Elaine Ricks and Eddie Jones, classmate Judy Walker will graduate in the spring of 2017.

In the fall of 1988, ten laypeople of Savannah Presbytery became the first graduating class of an innovative presbytery ministry know as the School of the Laity. A very demanding program of study requiring a two-year commitment and additional hours of class and preparation time, the School of the Laity was a vision of then Executive Presbyter Dr. J. Richard Bass, who saw the desire of laypersons to engage in serious study of scripture, theology, and ministry.

The students participate in two summer courses taught by college professors. Each session involves eighteen hours of class time and additional hours of personal study. The courses are: Introduction to the Bible and Introduction to Reformed Theology. In the final summer, they complete their studies with an in-depth course in Practical Ministry.

Students complete briefer courses in the spring and fall of two successive years. Savannah Presbytery ministers lead studies on Old Testament, New Testament, History, Mission & Polity and Practical Ministry 1.

To date over 250 laypeople have participated in the School of the Laity, representing two-thirds of the churches of the presbytery. Its graduates are providing outstanding leadership in their congregations, the presbytery and the Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.